Following is a summary of current entertainment news briefs.
Music streamer Spotify revenues topped 1 billion euros in 2014
Online music streaming service Spotify's revenues leapt 45 percent to top 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion) last year, though its operating loss widened due to product development and expansion costs, its holding company said. Stockholm-based Spotify, which provides free on-demand music or ad-free tunes for paying customers, posted an operating loss of 165 million euros, compared with a loss of 91 million euros in 2013.
Poll: Americans favor Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert over conservatives for punditry
Jon Stewart has spent 16 years skewering U.S. politicians and media as the liberal host of television's "The Daily Show" - and many Americans think he gets it right on the issues with his satirical look at the news. In a Reuters/Ipsos online poll, the Comedy Central comic topped a list of 10 pundits, with more than half of respondents saying they agreed with him on at least some issues. Only 12 percent did not agree with him on any issues at all.
Guy Carawan, known for civil rights anthem' We Shall Overcome', dies
Guy Carawan, whose rendition of the song "We Shall Overcome" became an anthem of the U.S. civil rights movement, has died at his home in Tennessee, The New York Times reported. He was 87. Carawan, a white folk singer, did not write the song, which has a long oral history that can be traced back to a church hymn in the late 19th Century that was taken up as a rally cry among labor activists in the 1940s.
Disabled wrestlers in Japan challenge stereotypes in film 'Doglegs'
Filmmaker Heath Cozens hopes to smash stereotypes about the disabled with his new documentary "Doglegs," about a handicapped pro-wrestling league in Japan. The New Zealand-born director discovered the wrestlers, who sometimes fight able-bodied opponents despite their physical and mental disabilities, while living in Japan for 18 years.
Music makes friends as Iran's Rastak ensemble crosses Gulf
The sharp sound of a sorna, an Iranian oboe-like instrument, pierced the silence of Muscat's Royal Opera House. Tandem drums drove an urgent rhythm, and a chorus of voices rose in volume to fill the auditorium. As other Gulf Arab countries fret over what they see as a growing Iranian military influence, hundreds of Omanis turned out on Thursday to welcome the 14 members of the Rastak ensemble to their capital and drink in the sounds of Iranian folk music.
Reese Witherspoon pursues polar opposite in comedy 'Hot Pursuit'
If Reese Witherspoon showed she can go raw and unglamorous in the drama "Wild," in her new comedy, the actress dons sensible shoes and big underwear to play the uptight cop to Sofia Vergara's voluptuous widow in teetering heels. "Hot Pursuit," opening Friday in U.S. and Canadian theaters, is a buddy comedy by women, about women, and mostly for women, and it started when Witherspoon - wearing her producer's hat - saw the potential of a comic pairing with Vergara.
'Modern Family' actress Vergara gets Hollywood Walk of Fame star
Colombian-born actress Sofia Vergara, one of the stars of comedy hit series "Modern Family", has received a star on the Walk of Fame, the 2,551st on the renowned Hollywood Boulevard. Vergara, the highest-paid actress on U.S. television for the last three years according to Forbes, posed by her new plaque with fiance Joe Manganiello and "Modern Family" cast members.
Seeing and believing: Virtual reality set to conquer living rooms
It sounded so promising. Anyone, anywhere would be able to strap on a headset in their living room and be able to experience events anywhere in the world - or outside of it - as if they were really there.
Actress Charlize Theron urges women to stand up for equal pay
After negotiating a salary equal to her male co-star for her upcoming movie, Hollywood actress Charlize Theron has called on other women to take a stand when it comes to equal pay. Theron said she was outraged when leaked Sony emails showed a gap in what male and female actors were paid for the film "American Hustle" and she insisted on being paid on par with co-star Chris Hemsworth for the Snow White sequel "The Huntsman".
Cast old and new unite at 'Mad Max: Fury Road' premiere
The much-anticipated rebooted version of "Mad Max" has seen cast members old and new unite on the red carpet with Mel Gibson, who starred in the original 1979 action film, making a surprise appearance. The actor and director, 59, played anti-hero Max Rockatansky in the Australian movie, directed by George Miller.